Fri, Nov 26, 2004 - Page 1 News List

Japanese Diet members resolve to support Taiwan

By Melody Chen  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs welcomed yesterday the conclusions reached at a conference held by a group of Taiwan-friendly Japanese Diet members, who said they respect and support the Taiwanese people's will regarding the country's constitutional reform and national title rectification.

The Japan-Taiwan Security and Economic Research Association, consisting of 47 Japanese Diet members, convened its first conference in the Japanese House of Representatives Wednesday since its establishment in May.

The association, headed by Diet member Hirosato Nakatsugawa of the Democratic Party of Japan, passed five resolutions concerning its position on Taiwan.

The association "respects and supports Taiwan's domestic opinions about its constitutional reform and national title rectification" and backs Taiwan's participation in the World Health Organization (WHO), the resolutions said.

The association also aims to facilitate a visit to Japan by former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), push the Japanese government to grant Taiwanese tourists visa-exempt entry and change the originating country registration for Taiwanese immigrants from China to Taiwan, the resolutions said.

"We welcome our Japanese friends' efforts ... These resolutions will strengthen interactions between people in Taiwan and Japan," ministry Spokesman Michel Lu (呂慶龍) said.

"The association fully supports Taiwan's democratization and liberalization. We hope the organization will become a significant bridge in Japan and Taiwan's security and economic cooperation," Nakatsugawa said at the conference, according to news reports.

Taiwan is one of Japan's closest neighbors, Nakatsugawa said.

"Taiwan's exclusion from the WHO is a problem that cannot be ignored. The international society has to pay attention to the problem," he added.

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